- Tapa blanda: 264 páginas
- Editor: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; Edición: First (22 de agosto de 2013)
- Idioma: Inglés
- ISBN-10: 1492233978
- ISBN-13: 978-1492233978
The Obstacles (Inglés)
Descripción del producto
Reseña del editor
A child will die. You’re afraid to live. Would you go to all lengths to save him? Darkness knows no bounds, as Alcott, an African American doctor sees all too well. The man is petrified by death. His fragile existence rests at the mercy of the universe. This fact is far too much for him to handle. From unyielding nightmares to elevator terrors, he’s lost in paranoia. Assigned to look after an ill child, Alcott’s horrors only heighten. Gari is a nine-year-old boy with a fatal disease. He will surely pass on within the year. Alcott bonds with him more and more each day. Part of him knows this grim fate just isn’t right. Alcott befriends a hospital patient. This lunatic forces him to lug home an ancient text on bringing back the dead. Despite the man’s obvious dementia, Alcott attempts the scheme. Charging up a cliff, he recites the chant over ocean gusts. A god woman glides in from the horizon. She instructs Alcott on the trials to save Gari’s life. These fearsome Obstacles require true strength. From battling sharks to wielding a flail, he must prove fortitude against genuine danger. Alcott decides his fate at this moment. Death’s claws shall not grasp Gari’s soul.
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I like it because:
the story is good and exciting. It is as a fantasy novel should be: challenge to the imagination. The characters work together for a main goal, yet have different personal goals.
The author's grammar needs rechecking, choice of words are poor and do not portray intentions of the characters properly.
Dragging out a story is not for me, but the pace is ok. Although author said this is just 1 book (indeed it ended), but the last chapter hints at a possible continuation.
However, it was a good, interesting read, the idea thought-provoking and clever, delving into the science - or myth - of how to cheat death.
Dr. Alcott is now a live-in doctor caring for a young boy named Gari. Dr. Alcott is prone to night terrors and fears death. One night when he goes to visit the hospital he has worked at in the past, he stops to talk to a well known patient named Mashilto. Mashilto is worried about young Gari and encourages Dr. Alcott to use the book Mashilto’s mother gave him. In it, he explains, is a way to raise the dead. The doctor is skeptical and agrees to take it and look at it. Once he has the book in his possession, he hears voices or he believes he is going insane. When his car is searched, the book is gone. Mashilto has no recollection of having a book like that. Dr. Alcott is shocked.
Gari’s latest visit is grave and he only has days left. After that terrible news is shared the book magically appears on Dr. Alcott’s bed. He panics in horror and fear. In the end he takes the book and completes the ritual. A Jauntla appears challenging him to give his own life for Gari’s life.
Once he agrees Dr. Alcott is a competitor in the obstacles. If he wins enough he earns the right to change fate. There are six total. Time is frozen until he wins at least three or loses four. He enters this adventure with four other people: Gretchen, Vitaly, Travis and Marya. Gretchen is trying to save her sister. Vitaly wants to save her father’s life. Travis is also trying to save his father’s life. No one knows why Marya is there. All they know is her story involves a drunk driver.
The obstacles are harrowing and dangerous. Alcott is thrust into his worst nightmares. If he fails Gari dies. If he succeeds he trades places with Gari and dies in his stead. It literally becomes the fight of his life.
The storyline for this book was very creative. I have never read anything remotely close. The idea of beating trials in order to save a loved one from death is interesting. As I read through the story I would ask myself what would I do in that situation.
However the main character Alcott seemed incredibly moody, or overly excited. His reactions to situations annoyed me. He came across as a very weak individual in the beginning. His confidence was extremely low which surprises me since he is a doctor. It takes a lot of drive and confidence to get to that point. So in my opinion there were a lot of conflicting details in the story that made for confusion in some places.
In others it felt like the author was trying too hard with his choice of words. The story didn’t flow as well as it should have. I can tell that the author is young. I give the story a 3 out of 5 for its creativity.
There is a great realm of believability and realism through this story, and it is matched by a wonderful fantastical element. The premise of Reardon's story is not to create heroes out of ordinary people, but instead is shows ordinary people trying to achieve the impossible in order to save someone in a truly selfless act. Alcott and the others participating in the obstacles all have their own reasons for partaking and we slowly see these reasons emerge as the story progresses.
There is a great amount of action too and Reardon uses it well and balances the excitement and the fantastical well. The obstacles they all face show great imagination on Reardon's behalf; they are clever and entertaining and filled with uncertainties that keep you guessing. The anticipation the contestants feel also translates across the page meaning you also feel nervous for the outcome and are unsure what will happen.
Reardon's strengths are in his creativity and expression of these ideas and the design of the world as well as his ability to surprise without losing sense of the story. In saying this, there are a lot of things unexplored. There are a few mysteries that are easy to leave unanswered such as the origin and nature of the mysterious book, as well as some of the elements in the magical realm, but other areas were less mysterious and more flat.
There are multiple twists and surprises through this story so you are never quite sure what is going to happen but you are intrigued to find out. Reardon's writing is captivating and unique and Obstacles is a compelling story that shows how people are willing to go to extreme lengths to save the people they care about.
A longer version of this review was posted on my blog http://lostinagoodbk.wordpress.com/2014/12/23/obstacles-by-christopher-reardon/
Secondly, the plot for this novel is astounding and like nothing I've ever came across before. A doctor bonds with his child patient, and is given a book by a dying man that allegedly has the power to save a life. Using this book he summons a goddess, who promises that if he succeeds at dangerous obstacles, the child will live.
I'm amazed that this is a debut novel based on the plot, but I must admit that the writing style could use a little more work I truly believe that the more Reardon works at his craft the more amazing he will become. That said, I am not a writer, I struggle to even write reviews let alone a novel, and so my critique may be completely out of line.
The development of characters was very well done, they were all realistic and likeable, and the settings that they are placed in are mind blowing. My only complaint regarding the story was that it seemed to move slowly, but that may have been just my experience. We all know I don't read a lot of fantasy, and though I like it I'm still adapting to the genre.
Overall this book was enjoyable but could have been better. Fans of the fantasy genre have more potential to love it, but I would say perhaps stay away until you fully love the genre. I'd love to see this book get a film adaptation, because I think that'd be a huge and highly addictive film.
I rated this book 3 stars on Goodreads.
This book was given to me in exchange for a review. My opinions are in no way affected by the publisher or author.
Originally posted here: http://thereadingwonderland.blogspot.co.uk/2014/10/review-obstacles-by-christopher-reardon.html